In the Loop: Pre-Sex Prayer, More Women Pastors, and Father-Daughter Baseball Bonding
A new study published in Reproductive Health demonstrates that states with "increased religiosity" tend to have the highest teen birth rates. In order to determine religiosity, researchers averaged the percentage of respondents who agreed with eight theologically conservative statements, including, ''There is only one way to interpret the teachings of my religion," and, ''Scripture should be taken literally, word for word." The researchers also found a link between high religiosity and lower abortion rates.
USA Today profiles the religious motivation behind Philip Garrido's kidnapping, rape, and imprisonment of Jaycee Dugard and the daughters he fathered with her. He often invoked Jesus and God to defend his actions, but, according to the report, his faith "had morphed from traditional Christian beliefs to a nearly indecipherable dogma that placed Garrido as a prophet who held the keys to a deep secret."
Former FBI profiler Ken Lanning, who specializes in kidnapping and child abuse cases, said, "A lot of them, when they're molesting children, put a lot of time and energy into trying to convince themselves that they're not bad people. In some cases the element of religion will come into it, and they will use varying aspects of their religious belief to justify all of this."
A 64-page "Prayer Book for Spouses" published by the London-based Catholic Truth Society includes prayers for every stage of marriage and family life, including a "Prayer Before Making Love":
Father, send your Holy Spirit into our hearts. Place within us love that truly gives, tenderness that truly unites, self-offering that tells the truth and does not deceive, forgiveness that truly receives, loving physical union that welcomes. Open our hearts to you, to each other and to the goodness of your will. Cover our poverty in the richness of your mercy and forgiveness. Clothe us in true dignity and take to yourself our shared aspirations, for your glory, forever and ever. Mary, our mother, intercede for us. Amen.
Uruguay, which was on the path to become the first Latin American country to allow same-sex couples to adopt, may not be so close after all. A new law, currently awaiting President Tabare Vazquez's signature, would drop a requirement that children can only be adopted by legally married couples or single parents. Gay rights activists say the law would open up adoption to those in same-sex unions, which the country currently endorses. However, attorney Juan A. Ramirez, an expert in civil rights law, told leading newspaper El Pais that, because the law does not explicitly grant permission to same-sex couples, judges still won't be able to approve these adoptions.
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